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This site focuses on Madame Blavatsky and her teaching - Theosophy. It features an introduction to Theosophy, study aids, research tools, original text, supporting evidence, membership, and visitor interaction.


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"ISIS UNVEILED" AND THE "THEOSOPHIST" ON REINCARNATION


IN Light (July 8) C.C.M. quotes from the THEOSOPHIST (June 1882) a sentence which appeared in the Editor's Note at the foot of an article headed "Seeming Discrepancies." Then, turning to the review of "The Perfect Way" in the same number, he quotes at length from "an authoritative teaching of the later period,"as he adds rather sarcastically. Then, again, a long paragraph from Isis. The three quotations and the remarks of our friend run thus:

"There never was, nor can there be, any radical discrepancy between the teachings in 'Isis' ('Isis Unveiled') and those of this later period, as both proceed from one and the same source--the ADEPT BROTHERS. (Editor's Note in Seeming Discrepancies.")

Having drawn the attention of his readers to the above assertion C.C.M. proceeds to show--as he thinks--its fallacy:

"To begin with, re-Incarnation--if other worlds besides this are taken into account--is the regular routine of nature. But re-Incarnation in the next higher objective world is one thing; re-Incarnation on this earth is another. Even that takes place over and over again till the highest condition of humanity, as known on this earth, is attained, but not afterwards, and here is the clue to the mystery.... But once let a man be as far perfected by successive re-incarnations as the present race will permit, and then his next re-incarnation will be among the early growths of the next higher world, where the earliest growths are far higher than the highest here. The ghastly mistake that the modern re-lncarnationists make is in supposing that there can be a return on this earth to lower bodily forms";--not, therefore, that man is re-incarnated as man again and again upon this earth, for that is laid down as truth in the above cited passages in the most positive and explicit form." (Review of T.P.W. in the Theosophist.)

And now for "Isis":

"We will now present a few fragments of this mysterious doctrine of re-Incarnation--as distinct from metempsychosis--which we have from an authority. Re-Incarnation, i.e., the appearance of the same individual--or rather, of his astral monad--twice on the same planet is not a rule in nature; it is an exception, like the teratological phenomenon of a two-headed infant. It is preceded by a violation of the laws of harmony of nature and happens only when the latter, seeking to restore its disturbed equilibrium, violently throws back into earth-life the astral monad, which has been tossed out of the circle of necessity by crime or accident. Thus in cases of abortion, of infants dying before a certain age, and of congenital and incurable idiocy, nature's original design to produce a perfect human being has been interrupted. Therefore, while the gross matter of each of these several entities is suffered to disperse itself at death through the vast realm of being, the immortal Spirit and astral monad of the individual--the latter having been set apart to animate a frame, and the former to shed its divine light on the corporeal organization--must try a second time to carry out the purpose of the creative intelligence. If reason has been so far developed as to become active and discriminative, there is no re-incarnation on, this earth, for the three parts of the triune man have been united together, and he is capable of running the race. But when the new being has not passed beyond the condition of monad, or when, as in the idiot, the trinity has not been completed, the immortal spark which illuminates it has to re-enter on the earthly planet, as it was frustrated in its first attempt. . . . Further, the same occult doctrine recognizes another possibility, albeit so rare and so vague that it is really useless to mention it. Even the modern Occidental Occultists deny it, though it is universally accepted in Eastern countries." . . .
This is the occasional return of the terribly depraved human Spirits which have fallen to the eighth sphere--it is unnecessary to quote the passage at length. Exclusive of that rare and doubtful possibility, then "Isis"--I have quoted from volume I, pp. 351-2--allows only three cases--abortion, very early death, and idiocy--in which re-Incarnation on this earth occurs.
I am a long-suffering student of the mysteries, more apt to accuse my own stupidity than to make "seeming discrepancies" an occasion for scoffing. But after all, two and three will not make just four; black is not white, nor, in reference to plain and definite statements, is "Yes" equivalent to "No." If there is one thing which I ardently desire to be taught, it is the truth about this same question of re-Incarnation. I hope I am not, as a dutiful Theosophist, expected to reconcile the statement of "Isis" with that of this authoritative Reviewer. But there is one consolation. The accomplished authoress of "Isis" cannot have totally forgotten the teaching on this subject therein contained. She, therefore, certainly did not dictate the statements of the Reviewer. If I may conjecture that Koot Hoomi stands close behind the latter, then assuredly Koot Hoomi is not, as has been maliciously suggested, an alias for Madame Blavatsky.

"C.C.M."

We hope not--for Koot Hoomi's sake. Mme. B. would become too vain and too proud, could she but dream of such an honour. But how true the remark of the French classic: La critique est aisée, mais l'art est difficile--though we feel more inclined to hang our diminished head in sincere sorrow and exclaim: Et tu Brute!--than to quote old truisms. Only, where that (even) "seeming discrepancy" is to be found between the two passages--except by those who are entirely ignorant of the occult doctrine--will be certainly a mystery to every Eastern Occultist who reads the above and who studies at the same school as the reviewer of "The Perfect Way." Nevertheless the latter is chosen as the weapon to break our head with. It is sufficient to read No. 1 of the Fragments of Occult Truth, and ponder over the septenary constitution of man into which the triple human entity is divided by the occultists, to perceive that the "astral" monad is not the "Spiritual" monad and vice versa. That there is no discrepancy whatsoever between the two statements, may be easily shown, and we hope will be shown, by our friend the "reviewer." The most that can be said of the passage quoted from Isis is, that it is incomplete, chaotic, vague, perhaps--clumsy, as many more passages in that work, the first literary production of a foreigner, who even now can hardly boast of her knowledge of the English language. Therefore, in the face of the statement from the very correct and excellent review of "The Perfect Way"--we say again that "Reincarnation, i.e., the appearance of the same individual--or rather, of his astral monad (or the personality as claimed by the modern Reincarnationists)--twice on the same planet is not a rule in nature "and that it is an exception." Let us try once more to explain our meaning. The reviewer speaks of the "Spiritual Individuality" or the Immortal Monad as it is called, i.e. the 7th and 6th Principles in the Fragments. In Isis we refer to the personality or the Finite astral monad, a compound of imponderable elements composed of the 5th and 4th principles. The former as an emanation of the ONE absolute is indestructible; the latter as an elementary compound is finite and doomed sooner or later to destruction with the exception of the more spiritualized portions of the 5th principle (the Manas or mind) which are assimilated by the 6th principle when it follows the 7th to its "gestation state" to be reborn or not reborn, as the case may be, in the Arupa Loka (the Formless World). The seven principles, forming, so to say, a triad and a Quaternary, or, as some have it a "Compound Trinity" subdivided into a triad and two duads may be better understood in the following groups of Principles :

And now we ask,--where is the "discrepancy" or contradiction? Whether man was good, bad, or indifferent, Group II has to become either a "shell," or to be once or several times more reincarnated under "exceptional circumstances." There is a mighty difference in our Occult doctrine between an impersonal Individuality, and an individual Personality. C.C.M. will not be reincarnated; nor will he be in his next re-birth C.C.M., but quite a new being, born of the thoughts and deeds of C.C.M.: his own creation, the child and fruit of his present life, the effect of the causes he is now producing. Shall we say then with the Spiritists that C.C.M., the man, we know, will be re-born again? No; but that his divine Monad will be clothed thousands of times yet before the end of the Grand Cycle, in various human forms, every one of them a new personality. Like a mighty tree that clothes itself every spring with a new foliage, to see it wither and die towards autumn, so the eternal Monad prevails through the series of smaller cycles, ever the same, yet ever changing and putting on, at each birth, a new garment. The bud, that failed to open one year, will re-appear in the next; the leaf that reached its maturity and died a natural death--can never be re-born on the same tree again. While writing Isis, we were not permitted to enter into details; hence--the vague generalities. We are told to do so now--and we do as we are commanded.

And thus, it seems, after all, that "two and three" will "make just four," if the "three" was only mistaken for that number. And, we have heard of cases when that, which was universally regarded and denounced as something very "black"--shockingly so--suddenly re-became "white," as soon as an additional light was permitted to shine upon it. Well, the day may yet come when even the much misunderstood occultists will appear in such a light. Vaut mieux tard que jamais!

Meanwhile we will wait and see whether C.C.M. will quote again from our present answer--in Light.

Theosophist, August, 1882


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List of Articles
1888
1890!
African Magic
Ahkoond of Swat
An Astral Prophet
An Unsolved Mystery
Ancient Doctrines Vindicated
Ancient Magic in Modern Science
Animated Statues
Answers to Queries
Antiquity of the Vedas
Apollonius Tyaneus and Simon Magus
Are Chelas "Mediums"?
Are Dreams but Idle Visions?
Arya Samaj
The Babel of Modern Thought
Black Magic in Science
Blessings of Publicity
Bright Spot of Light
Buddhism, Christianity and Phallicism
Buddhism in America
Can the Double Murder?
Can the Mahatmas Be Selfish?
Case of Obsession
Chelas
Chelas and Lay Chelas
Chinese Spirits
Christmas Then and Christmas Now
Civilization, the Death of Art and Beauty
Claims of Occultism
Classification of "Principles"
Count St. Germain
Cross and Fire
Cycle Moveth
Denials and the Mistakes of the Nineteenth Century
Devil's Own-Thoughts on Ormuzd and Ahriman
Diagnoses and Palliatives
Dialogue on the Mysteries of the After Life
Dialogues between the Two Editors
Do the Rishis Exist?
Does Vaccination Prevent Smallpox?
Dr. Beard Criticized
Dreamland and Somnambulism
Drift of Western Spiritualism
Dual Aspect of Wisdomhe
Echoes from India. What is Hindu Spiritualism?
Eddy Manifestations
Editorial Comment
Editorial Appendix
Eighth Wonder
Electric and Magnetic Affinities between Man and Nature
Elementals
Elementaries
Esoteric Axioms and Spiritual Speculations
"Esoteric Buddhism" and its Critic
"Esoteric Buddhism" and the "Secret Doctrine"
Esoteric Character of the Gospels
Fakirs and Tables
Fall of Ideals
Fate of the Occultist
Few Thoughts on Some Wise Words from a Wise Man
Force of Prejudice
Fragments
French View of Women's Rights
Genius
Grand Inquisitor
"H. M." and the Todas
H. P. Blavatsky on Precipitation and Other Matters
H. P. Blavatsky's Masonic Patent
Have Animals Souls?
Hindu Widow-Marriage
History of a "Book"
History of a Planet
Holmes Controversy
Holmes Controversy(continued)
Huxley and Slade
Hypnotism
Hypnotism, and Its Relations to Other Modes of Fascination
Imperfections of Science
Indian Metaphysics
Intro-Version of Mental Vision
Is Creation Possible for Man?
Is Denunciation a Duty?
Is Foeticide a Crime?
"Is it Idle to Argue Further?"
Is Suicide a Crime?
Is the Desire to "Live" Selfish?
Is Theosophy a Religion?
"Isis Unveiled" and the "Theosophist" on Reincarnation
Isis Unveiled and the Vishishtadwaita
"It's the Cat!"
Jews in Russia
Kabalah and the Kabalists
Kabalistic Views of "Spirits"
Karmic Visions
Knout, The. As Wielded by the Great Russian Theosophist
Kosmic Mind
Lack of Unity among Spiritualists
Lamas and Druses
Land of Mystery
Last Song of the Swan
Le Phare de L'Inconnu
Leaven of Theosophy
Leo Tolstoi and His Unecclesiastical Christianity
"Let Every Man Prove His Own Work"
Life and Death
Life Principle
Literary Jottings on Criticism, Authorities, and Other Matters
Lodges of Magic
Logic versus Peripatetic
Madame Blavatsky on "The Himalayan Brothers"
Magic
Mahatmas and Chelas
Memory in the Dying
Mind in Nature
Missing Link
Missionaries Militant
Mistaken Notions on "The Secret Doctrine"
Modern Apostles and Pseudo-Messiahs
Mote and the Beam
Mr. A. Lillie's Delusions
My Books
Mysterious Race
Nature's Human Magnets
Negations of Science
New Cycle
(New) York against Lankester. A new War of the Roses
"Not a Christian"!
Note on Eliphas Levi
Note on "Memory"
Notes on some Aryan-Arhat Esoteric Tenets
Notice to Mediums
Number Seven
Number Seven and Our Society
Occult or Exact Science?
Occult Phenomena
Occultism or Magic
Occultism versus the Occult Arts
Old Hindu Ships
Old Philosophers and Modern Critics
On Pseudo-Theosophy
On The New Year's Morrow
"Oppressed Widowhood" in America
Organisation of the Theosophical Society
Origin of Evil
Our Cycle and the Next
Our Three Objects
Paradoxical World
Parting Words
Persian Zoroastrianism and Russian Vandalism
Pertinent Queries
Pertinent Questions
Philosophers and Philosophicules
Popular Idea of Soul-Survival
Posthumous Publication
Practical Occultism
Pralaya of Modern Science
"Precipitation"
Premature and Phenomenal Growths
Progress and Culture
Protest
Psychic and Noetic Action
Psychic Warning
Psychology - The Science of the Soul
Puzzle from Adyar
Puzzle in "Esoteric Buddhism"
Queries and Answers
Questions Answered about Yoga Vidya
Re-Classification of Principles
Rebuke
Recent Progress in Theosophy
Reincarnations in Tibet
Reply to Our Critics, A. Our Final Answer to Several Objections
Republican Citizen
Retort Courteous
Roots of Ritualism in Church and Masonry
Russian Atrocities
Sacred Tree of Kum Bum
Science of Life
Science of Magic
"Scrutator Again"
Search after Occultism
Seeming "Discrepancies"
Seventeen-Rayed Sun-Disc
She Being Dead Yet Speaketh
Signal of Danger
Signs of the Times
Six-Pointed and Five-Pointed Stars
Society Without a Dogma
Some Scientific Questions Answered
Spiritual Progress
Spiritualism and Occult Truth
Spiritualism and Spiritualists
Spiritualism in Russia
Spiritualistic Tricksters
Star-Angel-Worship in the Roman Catholic Church
Stars and Numbers
Stray Thoughts on Death and Satan
Substantial Nature of Magnetism
Tetragrammaton
Theories about Reincarnation and Spirits
Theory of Cycles
"Theosophical Mahatmas"
Theosophical Society: Its Mission and Its Future
Theosophists and their Opponents
Theosophy and Spiritualism
Theosophy or Jesuitism?
Thoughts of the Dead
Thoughts on the Elementals
Tibetan Teachings
Tidal Wave
"To the Readers of 'Lucifer'"
Todas
Transmigration of the Life Atoms
Trickery or Magic?
Universe in a Nut-Shell
Views of the Theosophists
War in Olympus
Warning to Mediums
Was Cagliostro a "Charlatan"?
Washing the Disciples' Feet
What Are the Theosophists?
What is Occultism?
What is Theosophy?
"What Is Truth?"
What of Phenomena?
What Shall We Do for Our Fellow-Men?
What's in a Name? - Why the Magazine is called "Lucifer"
Which First - the Egg or the Bird?
Why Do Animals Suffer?
Why I Do Not Return to India
Why the "Vahan"?
"Word with Our Friends"
World-Improvement or World-Deliverance
Year is Dead, Long Live the Year
Year of Theosophy
Yoga Philosophy
 
Acknowledgement